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Mexican Cartel Commandeering Municipal Departments in Border City

MATAMOROS, Tamaulipas — The negotiations between the current municipal authority and organized crime figures tied to the Gulf Cartel demonstrate who has regained control of this border city. The move has brought illicit financial gains by the millions.

Under the cover of restoring peace, the city has seen an atmosphere where kidnapping, extortion and other crimes that directly affect average citizens have largely disappeared. Organized crime members have now been able to get a steady “legal” supply of income by targeting alleged lawbreakers through the use of towing and storage services and other municipal departments.

While the rest of the border cities keep an atmosphere of violence as cartels and military forces continue to fight with each other, clashes are almost unseen in Matamoros.

Under the name of “businessmen,” members of the Gulf Cartel have managed to infiltrate the departments that collect sums of money in order to ensure the flow of funds while keeping a peaceful atmosphere for the average citizen.

One of the ways that organized crime members have been collecting funds is through the use of an impound lot right behind the city’s transit police headquarters.

With the city towing large quantities of vehicles on a daily basis, the privately-run impound lot tied to organized crime members collects $40 dollars a day per vehicle.

When one individual is not able to provide documents proving they are the owner of the vehicle, the employees of the impound lot and of the city’s towing department dismantle the vehicle so it can be sold off for parts.

The way that various city departments have been operating including transit police, towing, alcohol enforcement and those tasked with overseeing the new casinos have allowed informal marketplaces with bootleg items to return along the main avenues of this city.

Almost six months after a new mayor took office, violent clashes between cartel gunmen and authorities have largely diminished. The peace continues to be tied to the unspoken accords that allow cartel members to freely operate without having to clash with authorities.

Editor’s Note: Breitbart Texas traveled to the Mexican States of Tamaulipas, Coahuila, and Nuevo León to recruit citizen journalists willing to risk their lives and expose the cartels silencing their communities.  The writers would face certain death at the hands of the various cartels that operate in those areas including the Gulf Cartel and Los Zetas if a pseudonym were not used. Breitbart Texas’ Cartel Chronicles are published in both English and in their original Spanish. This article was written by “J.A. Espinoza” from Matamoros, Tamaulipas.

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